Along The Path
with Sheilah Smith

Navajo Dam/Simon Canyon Ruin

It is a bright, beautiful day and I am once again headed for adventure.

From Farmington I stop at Bloomfield to pick up my "adopted" family Beth and her 3 1/2 year old son, Michael. We are heading to Navajo Lake and Dam and Simon Canyon Ruin, and we are excited to be away from town and in the bright sunshine.

It seems like a long drive before we reach Navajo Lake and Dam around 11:00 AM. Michael can't wait to walk to the edge of the lake below the dam to throw rocks into the lake and to feel how cold is the water. It was cool but not freezing.

We finally persuaded Michael we needed to go look at the quality fishing waters below the dam so we took the short drive to the parking area and walked along the road to try to get a closer look at the fishermen in the river.

Michael chased me, playing tag, while I was always just out of reach. He is such a joy to be with.

Coming back from the fishing area Beth and I were engaged in conversation when suddenly she warned me of a snake crossing the road directly in front of us. (If it'd been a snake it would've bit me thing).
Well, it really was a snake. Having my trusty camera at the ready the snake obligingly paused while I snapped its photo. [Simon Canyon Ruins - Snake]
We drove back to the Navajo Dam Community and stopped at the bridge to watch people fishing. Just north of the bridge and to the right we drove down a dirt road for quite a ways till we came to the picnic area at the bottom of Simon Canyon Ruin. It was early afternoon so we decided to have our lunch before venturing the climb to the ruin.

[Simon Canyon Ruins - boot]

We started along the path through the trees, crossed a wash
and after going about a block or so we looked up to see a
steep gravel road we would have to climb to get to the top
of the ridge. It took us a while to make but the climb wasn't
as strenuous as we thought it would be.

(Sheilah sent this to me, so here it is.)
There must be a story behind it. What?

Once on top of the ridge we followed the path of winding trail along the edge of the ridge weaving in and out among trees, bushes and big boulders for about a mile, although it seemed longer.

[Simon Canyon Ruins]
Looking North
We met a gentleman who told us we were almost there and pointed out the ruin sitting atop a big boulder.

Further along the trail we met a lone woman hiker who was headed back down the trail.

Reaching Simon Canyon Ruin, Beth and I took photos from various directions and angles. Sitting there looking at the ruin I wondered why the Indians chose this place for a dwelling place, how difficult it would have been to gather and stack the rocks atop that big boulder, and what they ate for food.

Life back then was certainly more perilous and uncertain than our modern-day life.

As it was getting on late afternoon we decided to start back to the picnic area. Michael was a little trooper and walked all the way except for the last block when he got tired and had Beth carry him. It didn't take him long to fall asleep on the way home.

That was our trip for this time. I hope you enjoyed coming along for the adventure. Sheilah

Here is a link to a beautiful page about Simon Canyon Ruins

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